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Tuesday , December 14, 2010
LJ ON JL: Weeks 4-5; Chapters 10-12
(Wherein ngfm's resident Beatlemaniac Laura Jane Faulds shares a weekly round-up of fun anecdotes and oddities gleaned from Philip Norman's John Lennon: The Life. For more information on what the Helter Skelter this column is all about, please click here)
Seen above is a triptych of The Holy Grail of John Lennon Father Figures- from left to right: the incomparable Brian Epstein looking cute in a "Stamp Out The Beatles" t-shirt; the unstoppable Aunt Mimi; George Martin, the classiest dude ever to have walked the face of the Earth
+ Ironically, John Lennon was the only Beatle NOT to be deported from Hamburg (this is ironic because, as we all know, our boy Johnny was a bit of a troublemaker). However, once the rest of the Beatles left, he had no choice but to follow the boys back to Lidz ("Lidz" is my new nickname for Liverpool, by the by). A good quote from Later-in-life John about this period in his life:
I withdrew to think whether [playing music] was worth going on with. I was always a sort of poet or painter and I thought, "Is this it?" Nightclubs and seedy scenes, being deported and weird people in clubs? You see, part of me is a monk and part of me is a performing flea.
+ A preferred pastime of JL and Gerry Marsden of Gerry and the Pacemakers (as reported by Marsden himself): "Reading the Bible backwards, putting in our own made-up words and doing funny voices." That sounds fun. I'll try it sometime.
+ In 1961, Paul McCartney briefly held a job at an electrical coil-winding firm called Massey & Coggins, where he was immediately singled out as being "potential management material". Like, no shit! Can you imagine being some crappy electrical coil firm in Lidz and then having Paul McCartney come work for you?!? You'd be like, "Yo! Make this kid CEO, like, STAT!"
+ According to me, John's Aunt Mimi was a woman debilitated by her irrational hatred of anyone who threatened to "steal John away from her". When John returned to Lidz from Germany, he used his earnings (a whopping seventeen pounds) to buy his then-girlfriend and future wife Cynthia Powell a brown suede coat. When weird vindictive Mimi found out about this, she "flew into a spectacular rage," calling Cyn a "gangster's moll" and then proceeding to throw a rotisserie chicken at John's head.
+ John Lennon on wearing a suit: Yeah, man, all right, I'll wear a bloody balloon if someone's going to pay me.
+ Paul McCartney wrote "When I'm Sixty-Four" when he was sixteen years old.
+ Onstage at The Cavern, Paul McCartney was once overheard yelling at Stuart Sutcliffe and Pete Best (respectively): "You may look like James Dean and you may look like Jeff Chandler, but you're both crap!" Ouch! The Iron Hand of McCartney burns, y'all.
+ Beautiful, wonderful Brian Epstein once wrote to Stuart Sutcliffe: "I didn't know anyone as lovely as you existed in Liverpool," which is the sweetest thing in the world to me. I'm sure he meant "Lidz", though.
+ During their Hamburg residency, the Beatles would often have to play ridiculously long sets, and would get through them by popping Preludin (a legal form of speed). John referred to taking them as "having a bean", which makes something really gross sound really cute.
Word, George Martin. You really get it.
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